Lupus Diagnosis? No Problem When You’re Kimberlee Davis

How does one become a licensed speech pathologist, adjunct professor, president of a nonprofit and founder of a new start-up - at the same time?

Katy Perry and The X-factor: Could it Be God?Licensed speech pathologist and businesswoman Kimberlee Ann Davis of Chicago, Illinois was recently diagnosed with lupus. Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs when your body’s immune system attacks your own tissues and organs.

Initially, Kim was diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome which is also an autoimmune system disorder. The differences between lupus and Sjogren’s Syndrome are best explained by doctors and researchers but for our purposes here may be described as subtle yet distinct.

Over the years, Kim has undergone over 20 procedures (including surgeries)  most related to the diagnosis of Sjogrens Syndrome. To the average person (like me), that is a lot of procedures, yet to hear Kim tell it – no big deal, which brings me to why I’m writing this story.

Through all of her health challenges Kim went from being a flight attendant (who could no longer fly because of Sjogren’s) to becoming a full time student with a part time job in order to get her degree in Communication Disorders to becoming a successful licensed speech pathologist.

And now, con-currently she is an adjunct professor with Xavier University, president of GDRI (Global Data Revenue Inc) and also a co-founder of a new start-up Functional MobileWear LLC.

To the average person (like me), that is simply amazing! While conducting my research on the subject I noticed that one of the major things lupus and Sjogrens do have in common is fatigue. Kim Davis is an anomaly to say the least.

“You just deal with whatever life places upon your shoulders in the most positive light you can imagine is what helps me get through it all.” said Kim in a recent phone interview with me.

“My faith in God and what is ordained for me to do for the community while here on earth takes precedence over “the woe is me” non-productive trap that is not hard to fall into along the way. I guess that’s it in a nutshell – I strive to be productive with my time on earth. If I’ve learned anything on this journey, it is the fact that life and good health are precious and I intend to make the best of my time here on earth.”

To the average person (like me), Ms Davis just served a wake up call. Time to get up!

By Glenn Clarke


10 Responses to "Lupus Diagnosis? No Problem When You’re Kimberlee Davis"

  1. Charmane Gonzalez   June 26, 2013 at 9:04 am

    I have Graves Disease (in remission), Lupus SLE, Fibromyalgia and Raynaud’s Disease. I choose to win. These diseases do not define me. I get up each morning and do my thing. The worst time for me was adjusting to the medications and plucking up enough courage to give myself a weekly injection of Methothexate.

    By the time I was diagnosed in January this year, by accident I might add, I figure I’ve been living with these diseases since I was 19. Putting a name or names to my illnesses does not change who I am. I’ve always been active, love riding my H-D and love the beach and swimming. I do more in moderation now as I know what causes a flair.

    I did not suddenly change my eating habits because I’ve always eaten healthy, we only have restaurant food once a week as a treat ( and sometimes pay the price as you don’t always know what spices they use). I refuse to eat fast foods as they’ve always made me feel sick.

    What can I advise anyone who’s newly diagnosed? Don’t allow the diagnosis to consume you. Don’t allow it to put you into a bout of depression. If you want to live, stand up and fight for life. If you allow the disease to kill you, it will. Take your medications. The doctors know the side effects and risks and believe your particular case will benefit you and outweighs the risks. There is good and bad to all medicines we have to take. If your current medicine is not working, talk to your Rheumatologist and find a medicine that does work.

    Yes, I’m sick. Yes I hurt. But with some lifestyle changes, living with Lupus is possible. You’ve just got to learn how to control the disease and make it work around YOUR schedule, not the other way round. I am a lupus warrior. I will survive this too.

  2. Donna ivill   June 24, 2013 at 8:06 am

    I have just been given the label of LE lupus. My mobility is terrible I sleep all the time, gaining weight. I hate being ill. I have gone back to work which I love but been sent home because I’m a health and safety issue. Just as access to work to come in to see what they can do. My family and life has changed so much since october. We had to sell our home because I could clim the stairs, so we are in the process of buying a bungalow. My sons home from Bristol uni and doing his third year at Salford. My daughter has changed lots. We are not the family we was. I hate the illness I cry myself to sleep if I could run away and it wouldn’t affect my children and husband I would. I feel so ill and down that I don’t want to be ill anymore.
    Any advice on ow I get over these feelings as anyone had these feeling?

  3. Kim Davis   June 20, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    Hi Heather, I’m Kim; I would NEVER want anyone to think that I am minimizing Lupus, Sjogren’s or ANY disease. I understand COMPLETELY how you feel……. I know from experience it’s NOT something you can “muscle through”. When I looked at my options it was either go on SSI (social security) or build a career around what I could do. For me that meant finding a career/skill with minimal physical activity. During my search I discovered a state program which paid 100% for my master degree; they even sent out a person to take notes for me when my joints were too swollen to hold a pen. I share my story out of gratitude. I understand being in the depths of despair, which is why it is soooo important that we share our tools and great finds with each other. Heather if it had not been for that state program I don’t know where I would be! I wish you Love, peace and strength on your journey.

  4. Rachel R   June 20, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    Heather, I agree with you, lupus is not something you can just muscle through. My take on the story is about making the best of whatever we’re dealt in life. I hope you continue to be inspired because that in itself is inspiring to me, yay for you!

  5. Cameron Davis   June 20, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    easy to get a lift from her attitude !

  6. Heather   June 20, 2013 at 11:12 am

    I too have lupus and sjogrens but the fatigue for me has been debilitating.Not the kind of thing you can just “muscle” through. However, I do find her determination inspiring!!!

  7. Ms April   June 20, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Amazing accomplishments and positve outlook!

  8. tooPretty   June 20, 2013 at 11:07 am

    It is very refreshing to read stories like this. I am one that sometimes whines and complains a little too much. Right now I’m thinking how fortunate I am just to enjoy normal health. I’m going to make today a more productive day that it may have been before I read this!

  9. Omar   June 20, 2013 at 11:00 am

    very inspirational story

    • spoton   June 20, 2013 at 11:08 am

      I agree with Mr Omar!


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